Standing, watching these two puppeteers playing with their puppets pulled my thoughts back to childhood. I don’t remember what our puppets were of, or where they came from but I’m guessing my Dad made them, because he did things like that.
Watching the two of them and the way they played, I would say this is a father and daughter combination. I would guess at the puppet with the flute being made by, and worked by the father, and the apprentice, possibly the daughter is playing the crowd with her more simply made puppet, and her extra energy.
See how the strings are attached?
If I remember rightly, a simple cross shape controls the body and arms with the main weight of the puppet taken by one string to the centre of the cross. The head then attaches to the top, and the hands to each end of the cross-bar. By tipping the cross forwards, the puppet will bow its head and by twisting the cross-bar so that the end move up and down you make the arms move in the same direction. The feet are controlled by one stick in your other hand. The legs are attached one to each end, but the strings are attached to the knees, not the feet, so that the puppet’s movements are more believable.
The man’s puppet has so many more strings though making it a lot more difficult to work, but of course, also making it a lot more realistic to watch.
More from before : Basking in “Barcelona“, June 2014.